From our vantage point in the Milky Way Galaxy, we see NGC 3344 face-on. Nearly 40,000 light-years across, the big, beautiful spiral galaxy is located just 20 million light-years away in the constellation of Leo Minor. This multi-color Hubble Space Telescope close-up of NGC 3344 includes remarkable details from near infrared to ultraviolet wavelengths. The […]
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Colourful star trails arc through the night in this wide-angle mountain and skyscape. From a rotating planet, the digitally added consecutive exposures were made with a camera fixed to a tripod and looking south, over northern Iran’s Alborz Mountain range. The stars trace concentric arcs around the planet’s south celestial pole, below the scene’s rugged […]
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Last week, a car orbited the Earth. The car, created by humans and robots on the Earth, was launched by the SpaceX Company to demonstrate the ability of its Falcon Heavy Rocket to place spacecraft out in the Solar System. Purposely fashioned to be whimsical, the iconic car was thought a better demonstration object than […]
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Happy New Year everybody! To begin the year we’re doing something a little different. This month’s image is taken by Afsheen Rane, an amateur astronomer at University of Toronto. Photographed is the Orion Nebula (also known as Messier 42) which is around 1300 light years away from Earth. Its brightness allows it to be visible […]
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Fans of our fair planet might recognize the outlines of these cosmic clouds. On the left, bright emission outlined by dark, obscuring dust lanes seems to trace a continental shape, lending the popular name North America Nebula to the emission region cataloged as NGC 7000. To the right, just off the North America Nebula’s east […]
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ASX 15th Symposium Schedule

January 21, 2018
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Hello everybody! It’s your friendly neighbourhood astronomy & space exploration club here to give you another update on our upcoming symposium. This time we have for y’all the event’s schedule, so without further ado…

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Event Schedule
5:30: Doors open
5:30 – 6:00: Ticketing
6:00 – 6:10: Opening Remarks
6:10 – 7:00: 1st speaker: Dr. John Charles
7:00 – 7:10: Q&A
7:10 – 7:20: Intermission
7:20 – 8:10: 2nd speaker: Prof. Soon-Jo Chung
8:10 – 8:20: Q&A
8:20 – 8:30: Closing Remarks
8:30 – 8:40: Raffle
8:40 – 9:30: Reception (food and drinks)

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Once again we cannot wait to see everybody there!

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Star Talk: Computer Vision on Mars REDUX

January 15, 2018
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computer_vision_on_mars“Computer Vision on Mars “, with Professor Jonathan Kelly

Hey everybody! As you may have remembered in November this Star Talk was cancelled due to some unforeseen events, so we’re gonna give this one more go!

Abstract: Modern computer vision technologies have been key to improving our understanding of the Red Planet over the past 15 years. Vision systems are deployed on-orbit (e.g., the HiRISE camera on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter), on the surface (e.g., the vision sensors on the rovers Spirit, Opportunity, and Curiosity), and have also been used for safe entry, descent, and landing of recent robotic platforms reaching the surface. In this talk, I will review the design and use of several of these vision systems, including, for example, how the Curiosity rover makes use of visual navigation methods when wheel odometry is unreliable (rolling over sandy terrain).

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About the speaker: Professor Jonathan Kelly is an Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies and the Director of the Space & Terrestrial Autonomous Robotic Systems (STARS) Laboratory. Before joining the University of Toronto, he was a Postdoctoral Associate in the Robust Robotics Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and he completed his Ph.D. in the Robotic Embedded Systems Laboratory at the University of Southern California.

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Date and Location: 7:10 PM Jan. 24th, McLennan Physical Laboratories (MP), Room 137

Telescope observing: 8:00 PM on 14th floor of McLennan Physical Laboratories (MP) (weather permitting) — you will be guided to the telescopes.

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ASX 15th Annual Symposium “Into the Unknown: The Future of Space Exploration”

January 3, 2018
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Hey everybody! As posted before, this year’s ASX Symposium will tackle the challenges of human space exploration. The Symposium will feature two speakers, Dr. John B. Charles (NASA Human Research Program) and Prof. Soon-Jo Chung (CalTech; Jet Propulsion Laboratory) and will be held on February 2nd, from 6:00pm-9:00pm in the JJR MacLeod Auditorium (1 King’s College Cir, Toronto, ON M5S 1A8) Earth Sciences Centre (33 Willcocks St, Toronto, ON M5S) room 1050.

Tickets are now available on Eventbrite.

And for more instantaneous updates on the Symposium please checkout our Facebook event page.

See y’all there!

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January 2018: Picture of the Month

January 3, 2018
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orion

Happy New Year everybody! To begin the year we’re doing something a little different. This month’s image is taken by Afsheen Rane, an amateur astronomer at University of Toronto. Photographed is the Orion Nebula (also known as Messier 42) which is around 1300 light years away from Earth. Its brightness allows it to be visible to the naked eye in the night sky and makes it a popular choice amongst amateur astronomers to observe.

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